Neighborhood Caretaker Alert
Response Center

Citizens can use the Neighborhood Caretaker Alert (NCA) form to anonymously notify the City of issues or concerns.  The NCA form is available in paper form only at City Hall, 139 S. Kirkwood Road; at the Kirkwood Community Center, 111 S. Geyer Road; at the Kirkwood Public Library, 140 E. Jefferson Avenue; and at ALL THREE Fire Houses (137 W. Argonne, 11804 Big Bend, and 1321 W. Essex).  If you have completed a form previously, you can find the results of your anonymous Neighborhood Caretaker Alert form here - click on the link and then enter your form number:

All Aboard: The Kirkwood City Blog
Archive:  January 2011

January 26, 2011:  Have you had a chance to check out the newest news site in St. Louis?, which operates nationally by covering mostly community and local news, has just opened a Kirkwood-Webster Groves page, at:  Lots of interesting news there, including local school sports and profiles of people you may know.  Check it out!

January 25, 2011:  FOR YOUR HEALTH.  We will occasionally post interesting and helpful health news here as we come across it.


Alzheimer's has been in the news a lot lately.  Perhaps you know someone with the disease, or maybe all the media reports about the terrible and debilitating effects of this brain-wasting disease have you worried. While researchers continue to work on a cause and a cure, there have been some hopeful discoveries in the past few years.  For example, elevating your HDL, or “good” cholesterol, not only protects your heart and your immediate health; it may also help to protect you against Alzheimer’s.

Researchers announced this week that in people over 65, those with the highest levels of high-density lipoprotein, or HDL, were 60 percent less likely to develop Alzheimer’s over a four-year period than people with the lowest HDL levels.  It also didn’t matter if the HDL occurred naturally or if it occurred due to the use of statin drugs such as Lipitor.  The researchers believe the frequency of Alzheimer’s in the population may actually be lowered if HDL levels can be raised across the board.

The study, conducted by Columbia University’s Taub Institute in New York, included 1130 people who were white, black, and Hispanic.  An HDL reading of 60 or higher is considered protective against heart disease, according to the American Heart Association.  An HDL reading of 55 or greater is achievable by changing diet and incorporating exercise into your routine.

Source:  Reuters, December 13, 2010

January 20, 2011:  IT'S A SNOW DAY!! 
Well, not for us it isn't.  The City of Kirkwood is open for business today.  Which is not to say we want you leaving your homes to come see us.  MODOT suggests that you leave your home only if it is essential.  However, we are here for phone calls and emails if you need us. 
What about that trash pick-up, you ask.  Yes, we are ON IT TODAY.  The trucks are slowed down a little bit with the snow, but if your collection day is today, we will be there.  That means if your collection day is WEDNESDAY - don't forget, we're already delayed by a day this week because of the MLK holiday this past Monday - so if your collection day is Wednesday, we will pick up your stuff TODAY (Thursday, Jan 20). 

What about Friday routes?   This week (week of January 17-21), Friday sanitation routes will be picked up on Saturday.  You heard that right:  SATURDAY.   We've had quite a few questions about Friday routes and about holiday weeks in general.  There are no good ways to describe this, apparently.  We've tried "pushed back a day" and "will shift by a day," but we're batting zero with that wording, so this is our most recent verbiage (tell us if you like it):  " On weeks when there is an observed City holiday, all sanitation routes (after the holiday) will be delayed by one day.  For example, if a holiday falls on a Monday, all routes are delayed by one day, so Monday routes get picked up on Tuesday, Tuesday routes get picked up on Wednesday, etc.   If the holiday falls on a Thursday, only Thursday and Friday routes get delayed by one day.  If your collection day is Friday and there is an observed holiday that week, your sanitation will ALWAYS be picked up on Saturday."  We hope that clears it up, but if not, give us a call:  822-5828.

January 10, 2011, question from Jen:  Beth, I love the new blog and I love the curbside recycling service.  I have a question. Based on a comment you made on the blog, and based on some other info from the sanitation dept., it seems like machines will be sorting the comminged recyclables? I read somewhere not to put the recycables in plastic bags first and then put them in the cart. Is it OK to put the recyclables into paper (recyclable) grocery bags, or will that interfere with the sorting process?  Thanks, Jen.

Great question, Jen!  You are correct about not putting plastic trash bags in the recycling cart.  Once these bags get to the sorting facility, they can gum up the machines.  However, it is perfectly fine to put your recyclables into a paper bag and drop the whole bag into the recycling cart.  I do that at my house.  Or you could use a cardboard box and do the same thing.  Paper bags and cardboard boxes are both recyclable themselves so they make great recycling containers to use inside the house.

January 9, 2011 - Friday Routes:  We've had lots of questions from Friday route recyclers about holidays.  Yes, if your collection day is Friday and there is an observed holiday any time that week, your trash, recycling, and yard waste will be picked up on Saturday.  To find out which holidays are observed in 2011, click here.

January 6, 2011:   We've had several questions from residents this week.  First, from Larry:  "I, and maybe others, need clarification about the orientation of recycle carts for pickup. As I read the brochure, "Carts should. . . with handles facing away from the street. . . " means with the hinge and wheels to the house side, the lid opening side (with the serial number) to the street. As I have traveled about town the past few days, it seems many others have interpreted the orientation to be the opposite. By handle, do you mean the part where the lid is hinged or, do you mean the grab bar mid-way up the front (serial number side)?"

Yes, Larry, the handle is above the wheels and axle, and it should be placed facing away from the street, i.e., toward your home.   Also:  There is a directional arrow imprinted on the cart indicating which side of the cart should face the street.  So if in doubt, after you have rolled the cart to the curb, just look down and check for the arrow.  Thanks, Larry!!

We had another question from Thomas about the black plastic bags (how many bags will the City provide each year) and yard waste (any changes there?).   First, the City will deliver 50 bags to each single-family household in November of each year.  This is a decrease from 100 in previous years, but we anticipate that residents will have less trash and therefore need fewer bags once everyone starts recycling.  Second, there will be no changes to yard waste collection, except that it will only be picked up on one day per week - on your normal sanitation collection day.  For more information about yard waste, visit this page of the City's Website.

Thanks Larry and Thomas!  Please keep those questions coming!
-- Beth

January 3, 2011:   Happy New Year!   Things are hoppin' in Kirkwood on this first working day of the new year.  Sanitation routes have changed, and Kirkwoodians are hauling out their recycled materials to the curb in their new carts.  Those of us at City Hall who have been working on bringing this change to you are very excited about curbside recycling.  And we are here to answer your questions:  You can call me at 822-5894, or our public works director Todd Rehg at 822-5820, or our sanitation department at 822-5828.

Just a Few Notes on Recycling:  As I was driving down Woodlawn today, I noticed a couple of things.  First, LOTS of people had their new recycling carts out at the curb.  Bravo!!  Second, almost all of those carts were facing the correct direction (the handle should be AWAY from the street).  I also noticed some people had placed more than five plastic bags of trash out for collection.  Don't forget that the maximum number of bags allowed per collection day is FIVE.  I've had some phone calls about this too.  You can use ANY kind of plastic bag you want to use.  You can buy the black bags from the City - at the Finance window in City Hall (8am to 5pm weekdays) - or you can use the ones you buy at the grocery store.  But whatever you do, please don't put ANY plastic bags inside your recycling cart.  The plastic used in trash bags can damage the sorting machines that will be sorting your commingled recyclables.